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(Fireflies #1)

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  401 ratings  ·  89 reviews
Dr. Owen Whelan and his wife Sarah have seven bright and expressive children. However, one of them is very unique; hes been followed since birth by lost souls.
However peculiar Ennis Whelan has been for the first six years of his life, not until the day he found the bird did the degree of his strangeness become so tangible.
Ennis claimed it flew away.

His sister Teagan
Paperback, 1st edition, 292 pages
Published April 3rd 2013 by Mythos Press (first published March 28th 2013)
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P.S. Bartlett My mother's family hailed from Nanticoke. I've been there several times and seen how beautiful it is. It's always been an inspirational place to me.…moreMy mother's family hailed from Nanticoke. I've been there several times and seen how beautiful it is. It's always been an inspirational place to me. Her stories about growing up there and tales of my coal mining ancestors were also entwined deeply into my inspirations, via her memories. I'm also the youngest of 11 children so I understand large families.
Thank you so much for asking.


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Average rating 4.10  · 
Rating details
 ·  401 ratings  ·  89 reviews

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Jul 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Fireflies by PS Bartlett is an enchanting story of the close-knit Whelan family, coming to terms with their unusual youngest member.

First Paragraph:

"Ennis found a bird. He stood like a fence post, straight and still and about half as tall, cupping the small brown sparrow between his chubby palms and looking down in sorrow. Its feathers were softer than he had imagined and it didn't try to peck him or escape as he'd expected. Its tiny talons scratched him lightly and tickled his skin. Its dark
Karen Kepner
Jul 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This book wasn't expected. I grew up in the hard coal region of PA, in an immigrant population, so Luzerne County hooked me first. The book's characters were realistic, human and their stories captivated me. I found the book well written with a plot that combined love, family and heartache seemlessly into a fascinating read.
Sonja Arlow
May 10, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley, fantasy
The story premise sounded very interesting.....Dr. Owen Whelan and his wife Sarah have seven bright and expressive children. However, one of them is very unique; hes been followed since birth by lost souls.

At times it felt as if the story was written for a very young audience, the characters are very simplistic, with very black & white moral views but then some adult issues are addressed which means that no, Mommy will not be reading this to Tommy at night.

But this was not an entirely
Lisa Carson
Jul 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Wow! I was pulled in from the beginning, feeling like a family member and watching their lives evolve around me. I could picture myself sitting at their table waiting for Dr. Whelan to arrive home. I could picture myself racing across the fields heading to the neighbor's house. I believe this is a thoroughly enjoyable read for pre-teens and above. I'm hoping this author shares more tales of the Whelan family; how they began and where they are going. Highly recommended to all and I may purchase a ...more
Jul 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very sweet story about how small acts of kindness have far reaching impacts

Genuine, likeable characters.
May 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this tale of a magical young man and his family during the 1800s. Particularly found the story of his Irish immigrant father intriguing, and also how the narrator handled their accents! That made the story come alive even more. I'm looking forward to reading more of P.S. Bartlett's work in the future. If you believe in magic, and enjoy fantastical Irish tales, don't miss this one!
Jul 25, 2017 rated it liked it
Though this story takes place in a time far gone, it was fresh and the characters were relatable. I liked the religious/spiritual tones. Generally good people with real-life experiences. Interesting end.
Apr 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I really enjoyed this book it certainly raises a lot of interesting spiritual questions
Larry Landgraf
May 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The author has woven a splendid story of young Irish immigrants who fled their homeland for a better life in America in the latter half of the nineteenth century. The story was realistic and engaging. I could feel the hardships they faced as they found love during this difficult era.

Owen and Sarah Whelan are raising seven children ages six to twenty in Pennsylvania. The youngest, Ennis, is a wonderful and gifted child who amazes, but also scares his parents.

The character development was good
Fireflies by P. S. Bartlett is like a trip back in time, when dating someone was courting and courting meant you had intentions of marriage. It was also a time when the impossible was a little more frightening and more likely to be explained as something from God or the devil. When six-year-old Ennis, the youngest child in a close-knit Irish family begins to show special abilities to heal and he claims to see a woman who guides his abilities, the Whelan family gathers closer together in awe and ...more
P.S. Bartlett
Mar 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Fireflies most likely started when I was born. When I make that statement, what Im really saying is growing up as the youngest of eleven children in a blended family of five half-sisters, two half-brothers and a sister and two brothers by your shared parents, was as much interesting and fun as it could be tragic and confusing. However, this story isnt about my family, although my experiences of being raised in such a chaotic yet loving atmosphere certainly fed my creative process and gave me ...more
Toni L.
Feb 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was a very good book. Am on to the second one.
Laura Leichling
Apr 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I have read many many books in my life... and only on one hand can I count the stories.. that made me completely forget where I was as I read them. Fireflies is at the top of that list.
I felt that I was in the 1800's... and was happy to be there. I could feel the Whelan wood porch beneath my feet and smell the air that surrounded it.
The Whelan family has become my family. I want to know what happens next in their lives... It was the most inspiring, love-filled, family oriented page turner of my
Jul 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The beautiful cover of this book and the summary of the storyline drew me in. I am always fascinated with the dynamics of families. This book is a great example of a family that loves one another through both the happy and hard times. A reminder that things worth having are not always the easiest choice but definitely worth the effort and the work.

Sarah and Owen's stories about getting to America added an interesting element to the book and created some interesting plot twists. My heart ached
Kindle Ninja
Aug 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The story of the Whelan family is set in the 1800s. It would take absolutely brilliant writing to really take us back in time to a different century and the writer has achieved this quite impressively.

This is one of those books that has to be read at a leisurely pace so you could appreciate the beauty of the narrative. While it focuses on Ennis extraordinary gift, this is as much about his father Owen, who also has a story to tell. This then explains the difficult situation that the family has
Dani Moore
May 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Ennis was holding a small still bird, until a breeze ruffled his hair and it flew away. He was six years old and his life was about to change. His mother tended to baby him as he was nearly lost at birth, small and not breathing for what felt like the longest time. His Da was a doctor, his brothers and sisters growing healthy and strong. Theirs is a happy family. His sister Teagan was the first to notice that he was changing, starting to be able to do things no person should be able to do. What ...more
I requested this book from NetGalley because it looked interesting. Unfortunately, I found the beginning slow and full of info dumpage. The line "Doctor Owen Whelan was a good man, a loving husband, and a devoted father" is typical of the bland sort of storytelling that puts me to sleep. I couldn't get past the 3% mark. Although I thought the chosen time period could have been interesting, the way the author conveyed the characters' manner of speech was horribly distracting. "Not a 'tall," for ...more
Katherine Holmes
Jul 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Strong writing that encompasses a family, its history, romance, and the psychic gift of a boy. Irish dialogue tends to tell events while omens come from Ennis, creating suspense. I liked the interludes of family history that affected the time of the story. I also like ghost stories and was kept reading by these past characters contacting the family characters.
Jul 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Bartlett, P.S.
wow this book is amazing, i am lost in its pages waiting to find out the lives of this pioneering family. I love the description of the sons eyes, and the mothers tender love, the sister trying to protect her brother, and the soft young love of urgent youth. This is a very sweet story.
Adrienne Hinson
Aug 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A wonderfully magical and surprisingly addictive read! From the very first chapter I was in love with this family and their community. I could have read it straight through if it weren't for taking care of my own family. Nicely sprinkled twists and surprises throughout. I look forward to Ms. Bartlett's next novel.
Jul 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Very easy read. Looking forward to reading the prequel.
May 31, 2013 rated it really liked it
An interesting story about a young boy who is touched by angels. He can heal the sick and injured. Set in the 1800's this is a story of faith and great historical perspective.
Apr 23, 2013 marked it as own-tbr
Won Ebook from LibraryThing 4/15 (dwnld. from Smashwords), review to follow
Jennifer Pletcher
Jan 06, 2019 rated it liked it
This is the story of a young boy named Ennis. He lives with his parents and his 6 siblings in Pennsylvania. Since his birth, Ennis has been followed by lost souls. But nothing comes to light until he is 6 years old and helps a hurt bird by healing it. His sister, Teagan, witnesses this but tell Ennis that he can never tell anyone what happened. One day, Teagan is injured badly, and Ennis heals her. At this time, his sister thinks they must tell their parents because she does not understand what ...more
Shannon Lenore
Aug 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very good book! Highly recommend. An enjoyment from beginning to end. Really liked the ending was quite a surprise. All in all a really good read. Would recommend it to anyone.

Very good book. Would recommend it to anyone who likes books about angels and miracles. Definite a++++++++++++ for this book.
Angel Yates
Feb 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Simply Beautiful!

When hard times find harsh choices,love finds a snuggly warm place to snuggle within. When darkness sneaks in light brightens the past. Out of the mouth of babes. Love shall overcome. What a beautiful,sweet sweet loving story! I just want to squeeze Ennis!
Susan Lee Thuener
Eve story of faith and trust.

I wasn't sure where this story was going but the more I read the more the significance became clear to me. Christians will enjoy it the most I think, at least I did as it brings a potent reminder of my faith.
Nov 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

The clean story with a beautiful storyline keeps u guessing and wondering each step of the way! Enjoyed it a while lot
Deanna Vaughan
Jul 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting read

A lot of different elements combined to make a fascinating read and some thought provoking questions. Great book, once I started reading it, I couldn't put it down.
Melissa haney
Feb 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well written

Very good book wished the ending was a little more explained. Or maybe just went a bit deeper. Needed .more.
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Award winning author, P.S. Bartlett, was born on Valentine's Day many moons ago in South Baltimore, Maryland, less than a mile from Fort McHenry and Federal Hill. The youngest of eleven children, she grew up surrounded by history and loved exploring these national monuments on her bicycle as a child with her friends, regularly.
She published her first novel in 2013 and since then, has

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